I love to sing, but nowhere to sing

I love to sing, but nowhere to sing


14.02.2017 – 12.04.2017

“I love to sing, but nowhere to sing”, Jixian, Tianjin, China



Live performance

“Shadow puppetry is an art form combining drama, sculpture, fine art, and music. As it combines so many different kinds of art, shadow puppetry is very unique. It’s the earliest image art in China as well as the origin of modern films. Shadow puppets and plays from different ages can be different in script and craftsmanship. As shadow puppets first appeared so long ago, they can be called the ancestor of Chinese opera and film. According to legend, in the Han Dynasty (jade), a concubine of the emperor died, which made the emperor so sad that he didn’t eat or drink anything. The ministers wanted to

help, so they made a shadow puppet in the form of his dead concubine, and put it behind a curtain. The shadow puppet made the emperor feel that the dead concubine was still there and with him in his heart. This is how the puppet shadow was born.”


帮助,所以他们以他死去的妃子的形式制作了一个皮影,并将其放在窗帘后面。 皮影让皇上觉得死去的妃子还在,还在心里。 傀儡影就是这样诞生的。”

Vom 14. Februar bis zum 12. April 2017 arbeitete Yingmei als “Artist in Residence” in der Stadt Jixian, Tianjin mit der Familie Zhou ( Wentai Zhou, Yongliang Zhou, Jinliang Zhou) zusammen, die seit Generationen in der Kunst des Schatten- Puppenspiels auftritt. Die Zusammenarbeit zum Thema “Schattenpuppen” ist als “Work in Progress” konzipiert. 

2017年2月14日至4月12日,映梅与世代从事皮影艺术的周氏家族(周文泰、周永良、周金良)在天津蓟县做驻场艺术家。 以“皮影戏”为主题的合作被设计为“进行中的作品”。

Das Kennenlernen des alltäglichen Lebens der Schattenpuppen-Künstler und das Verständnis für die Besonderheit ihrer Arbeit bildete die Basis für die performative Zusammenarbeit.

Gesucht wurde ein Weg, traditionelle und zeitgenössische Ideen zu kombinieren, um auszuloten, wie die tradierte Welt der Schattenpuppe mit den zeitgenössischen Vorstellungen der Moderne, der Globalisierung und Hightech verbunden werden kann.



Ziel des Projektes ist es, einen Dialog der Sprache der zeitgenössischen Kunst mit der traditionellen Schattenpuppen-Kunst aufzubauen. Am Ende soll sich das Projekt auf die Entwicklung einer zeitbezogenen Schattenpuppen-Kunst (Animation, Performance, Installation, Klang usw) konzentrieren.

该项目的目的是在当代艺术语言和传统皮影艺术之间建立对话。 最后,该项目应重点发展与时间相关的皮影艺术(动画、表演、装置、声音等)。

“Their father Zhou Wentai was born in 1949. He was so obsessed with the art of shadow puppets as a teenager. Later, influenced by his father-in-law, he specialised in singing technique. Then he joined a shadow puppet troupe and performed traditional shadow plays in Tianjin, Hebei and other places, through which he accumulated many rich experiences. He was committed to the collection of traditional shadow puppet scripts.


Zhou Yongliang is a native of Xu Jiatai village in Jixian county, Tianjin. He was born in 1972 to a family who specializes in shadow puppets. Now Zhou Yongliang is a professional shadow puppeteer, who’s good at shadow puppet sculptures, singing, and performing. He learnt the art of shadow puppetry from his father as a boy, and then he became a pupil of Zhangkui, who was an inheritor of Tianjin’s strong cultural heritage of shadow puppet craftsmanship, and he’s also the fifth generation of Zhang’s disciples. In 1996, he went with

a shadow play troupe into rural areas to perform traditional shadow plays, and from then on, he began to perform with shadow puppets in different places throughout the country. Many shadow puppet lovers from home and abroad come to visit and learn from him. In recent years, he has begun to explore a combination of traditional and contemporary forms of puppet shadows.

周永良,天津蓟县徐家台村人。 他于1972年出生于一个专门从事皮影戏的家庭。 现在的周永亮是一名专业的皮影师,擅长皮影、唱歌、表演。 自幼随父习皮影技艺,师从张奎,张奎是天津皮影技艺深厚文化底蕴的传承人,也是张奎的第五代传人。 1996年,他与

一个皮影团到农村表演传统皮影戏,从此,他开始在全国各地用皮影表演。 许多国内外皮影爱好者前来参观学习。 近年来,他开始探索传统与现代相结合的木偶皮影形式。 

His brother Zhou Jinliang was born in 1978. He was deeply influenced by his family since his early childhood. Therefore in 2006, Zhou Jinliang started to investigate and research the value of Piying art, the historical influence of Jixian’s shadow puppets and their popularity with audiences. Jinliang set foot in the villages of Jixian as well as Beijing and Hebei. During the process he sorted out a large number of video materials from many artists from the past, and collected many precious historical relics related to shadow puppetry, including more than a thousand volumes of scripts. He continues to devote

himself to the exploration, collection, and protection of local shadow puppet art.”

弟弟周金良出生于1978年,从小就深受家庭影响。 于是,2006年,周金良开始对皮影艺术的价值、集贤皮影的历史影响和观众喜爱程度进行考察和研究。 金良踏足蓟县和北京、河北的村庄。 在此过程中,他整理了大量历代艺人的影像资料,收藏了许多与皮影有关的珍贵历史文物,其中剧本千余卷。 他继续投入致力于对本土皮影艺术的探索、收藏和保护。”